Poor Groupon has some massive names to deal with when it comes to competitors and Groupon wannabes- first Facebook moved into the space with Facebook Deals, and now Amazon has their big box sights set on grabbing some market dominance as well.
The web retail giant is launching AmazonLocal- beginning in Boise, of all places. In a FAQ about the new service, Amazon says they “will quickly be expanding to other cities, but [they] liked the idea of starting in a city that embraces fun.” The inaugural deal is $6 for $13 worth of ice cream at a Boise business named Goody’s, and Amazon is currently aggregating its deals for local.amazon.com through LivingSocial, a Groupon-like site that offers the same social deals to users.
Since the deals are only available for Boise right now, it’s difficult for those of us in other markets to see precisely how it works. Interestingly, no integration with a smartphone app to redeem vouchers was mentioned in an FAQ on AmazonLocal. If that’s the case, it’s a very notable downside stacked side by side with Groupon because one of the most convenient aspects of the service is not having to plan ahead and print a voucher to redeem offers. (How much less likely would you be to purchase a voucher if you had to be sure to have a printed copy at all times in order to redeem the deal?)
The easiest way is to print your voucher and take it with you to the business. The business will verify the code printed on your voucher. Remember to check your voucher for redemption instructions, such as scheduling requirements, locations where it can be used, and expiration dates.
Even with printing requirements, Amazon could grab a large share of Groupon’s market with the release- especially considering the level of trust in the e-commerce market that Amazon has. Are you planning on using AmazonLocal when it hits your market?